Vitamin D and Infertility

Vitamin D deficiency can be the cause of many disease states, but it is most recently concerning to our practice, as new evidence suggests it plays a role in infertility.  Specifically, we’re learning that vitamin D affects embryo implantation and placenta formation.

So how do you know if you’re getting enough of the sunshine vitamin?  A simple blood test will reveal normal levels or deficiency.  Here at FSMG, we’ve added this test to our standard diagnostic protocol in an effort to stay ahead of the curve in the field and provide the best care possible to our patients.  The Endocrine Society and the American Congress of Obstetricians and Gynecologists (ACOG) suggest a maintenance dose of 600 IUs per day if levels are normal.  If you are found to be deficient, the recommendation is 1500 to 2000 IUs per day for non-pregnant women and 1000 to 2000 IUs per day for pregnant women.

Vitamin D can be synthesized by the body with sun exposure, obtained in the diet, or supplemented.  Skin exposure unprotected by sunblock for 5 to 30 minutes two to three times per week is required to sustain adequate vitamin D levels.  Very few natural food sources contain vitamin D, which is why it has been fortified in foods like cereals and dairy products. The following table is a list of foods containing the highest concentrations of vitamin D.  If you’re going to supplement vitamin D, we suggest purchasing a brand with “USP” (United States Pharmacopeia) or “NSF” (National Science Foundation) verification on the label.  These seals ensure quality manufacturing practices, product safety, and proper labeling.  Additionally, the USP seal verifies that the product has been independently tested for purity, potency, and dissolution time.